Cheap and free things to do as a family this June half term
School holidays can be a worry for parents keen to make the most of them, but the costs can soon rack up.
And with the cost of living crisis taking hold, we’ve put together some suggestions for families to enjoy the half term break, but on a budget and as stress-free as possible.
Of course, we can’t guarantee places will not be busy and packed with families thinking the same, especially if the Met Office’s forecast of sunny and warm weather at the end of the weekend comes to fruition. Take a look at our suggestions below.
From Thursday, June 2 to Sunday, June 5, Lancashire will turn red, white and blue to join in the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. All ages can get swept up in the many free events taking place, including band stand concerts, street parties and parades.
Why not head out into your local neighbourhood and spot the houses, pubs, restaurant and town high street’s decorated in punting and flags? maybe you could even vote for the best one.
For a full round-up of street parties, click here. Or how about these events to get involved in:
Blackburn Youth Zone are hosting a number of events across the weekend, inducing a High Tea (invitation only) and a family fun day on Saturday, June 4, which is open to everyone. Head over to Mr Dowson’s Farm for the Big Jubilee Lunch from June 2-5. There will be a BBQ, carnival stilt walkers, cake stalls and of course, plenty of ice cream to enjoy as a treat and animals to see.
The East Lancs Concert Band will give a free concert on the lawn behind Towneley Hall on Sunday, June 5 from 2pm-4pm while there will be a vintage swing in Burnley town centre on Saturday, June 4 from 10am to 4pm.
Preston will be hosting several events, which will be launched by the mayor with a parade of the Preston Air Cadets and Preston Sea Cadets. at the Flag Market at 8pm on June 2. The evening will climax the lighting of the Official Platinum Jubilee Beacon at 21.45pm. The annual Preston City Mela follows on June 4 while Avenham Park hosts The Big Lunch, from 11am until 4pm.
In West Lancs, Coronation Park in Ormskirk will be a hub of activity, with performances from the Skelmersdale Prize Band on June 2, ahead of the lighting of the Jubilee Beacon, Beacon Country Park, 8.45pm until 9.10pm. While Tawd Valley Park’s Amphitheatre will come alive with celebrations on June 3 from midday.
Even when it’s cloudy, it’s still hopefully warm enough in June for us hardy Lancastrians to pack up the car and head to a seaside town for some sandcastle building and paddling in the sea. There’s pebbly ones and sandy ones and beaches with a bit of both to choose from.
Over in Fleetwood, relax on the Marine Beach, which also has its own cafe and you can head up The Mount hill or maybe you can have your picture taken in front of the colourful traditional beach huts.
Head to Lytham, start at the famous lighthouse and walk along the seafront on the beach or the promenade and finish up with an adventure on the beach and under St Anne’s Pier.
Happy Mount Park in Morecambe has a fantastic play park – the perfect way for youngsters to cool down on a sunny day, while you cold visit Western Frontier and Leisure Lakes in Mere Brow. There, you can marvel at the huge fishing lake and even its own beach along with a picnic area and outdoor adventure play park, with the Western Frontier pub serving food and drink suitable for all ages.
There may be many tempting things to lure you and the family in to spend money in Blackpool but there’s also several ways to soak in the resort on the cheap.
You could spend a few hours on the pier or at the Coral Island arcade, where kids eat free and you could challenge your youngsters to the 20p coin machines and other arcade games, making sure you give them a strict budget to stick to and of course, the old faithful ‘when it’s gone, it’s gone’ rule.
Walk on he Comedy Carpet in the shadows of Blackpool Tower to see which names you recognise, stroll along the piers or the beach, which are all free and enjoy a picnic or ice creams.
Get outdoors and explore bird watching hides, beauty spots, picnic areas and wildlife trails, with most parks offering either free or limited cost car parking.
Explore the 480-acre Witton Country Park in Blackburn or the Ribble and Alt Estuaries, while Hesketh Out Marsh is home to rare wildlife and the Fairhaven Lake Visitor Centre, Leighton Moss near Carnforth or Hest Bank mudflats in Morecambe Bay could be the perfect places for a family advanture.
Smaller wlaks and trails can be found at Fairy Glen and Mere Sands Wood, both near Ormskirk, Brockholes in Preston, Fleetwood Marsh Reserve or Heysham nature Reserve near Morecambe.
Search for mythical creatures on the Pendle Sculpture Trail in Aiken Wood in Barley or if an area of natural beauty near to the bright lights of a historic city are what you are looking for, how about Williamson Park in Lancaster, Corporation Park in Blackburn or Avenham and Miller Park in Preston?
Here’s a round-up of some of the best stately homes, medieval sites and castles you can visit in the county this half term.
Please note: We have only included venues with free or minimal entry fees (less than £30 for family ticket)
Heskin Hall, Chorley (special jubilee celebrations on Friday, June 3, 11am-4pm)
Rufford Old Hall and Gardens, Rufford (weekends only)
Hoghton Hall (Thursday and Friday hours may differ)
Samlesbury Hall, Preston (closed Friday and Saturday)
Lancaster Castle, Lancaster
Clitheroe Castle and Museum, Clitheroe
Leighton hall Estate (2-5pm, closed Thursday)
Towneley Hall, Burnley (Friday opening hours may change, closed Saturday )